Syrian Army, Rebels Agree on Zabadani Truce

DAMASCUS: Government forces and rebels in Syria have agreed to a ceasefire in the southwestern town of Zabadani following indirect negotiations between the two sides.

Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said guns fell silent and rocket fire stopped across Zabadani, located approximately 45 kilometers northwest of the capital, Damascus, in line with a 48-hour ceasefire agreement that came into force at 6:00 a.m. local time (0300 GMT) on Thursday.

The ceasefire between the Syrian army troopers and the foreign-backed extremists also restored calm in the villages of Fuaa and Kafraya.

The development comes as Syrian army soldiers backed by fighters from the Lebanese Hezbollah movement had already made some advances in Zabadani, clearing the rebels from key areas in the town.

They mounted a joint operation early last month to take Zabani back from the rebels.

Syrian jet fighters meanwhile conducted a series of aerial strikes against the strongholds of rebels in the western provinces of Idlib and Hama, killing and injuring a number of them.

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